My paleo diet personal story starts several years ago back in 2012. When I first read about it and started learning the paleo diet, it made perfect sense to me...eat like our cave man ancestors did.
I decided to go into it 100% (with no exceptions) because I wanted to really experience what it was like sticking with it all the way. I didn't want to "cheat" by eating non-paleo foods and alter the results and I also wanted to do this for a specific period of time. I chose to give this a try for 1 month at 100%.
But, I had a lot of questions going into it though. It was a little scary eating like this because it was like heading into uncharted waters. How I would feel? Would I crave any foods that I was used to? Would I have more or less energy with a reduced amount of carbohydrates? Would I get enough fiber without grains?
Questions or not, off I went into paleo land!
I filled the pantry and the fridge with all fresh organic fruits, veggies, grass-fed meats, nuts and seeds. I also stocked up on some fresh herbs and spices as well and had some basic recipes.
Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks all day every day was based solely on the Paleo diet. At this point, the biggest change was in food preparation and the extra work and time it took to prepare meals. There's not much in the way of fast food when we're talking about the paleo diet!
I otherwise went about my normal daily routine and the food preparation slowly became a part of that routine.
By the end of the week, I had noticed that my clothes were already fitting me differently.
I knew I was losing some weight on this new diet but it shocked me when I saw how much....15 pounds!
I never considered myself overweight. I was about 200 lbs when I started and I dropped to 185 and the belly was melting away...fast.
As a matter of fact, I thought that there might be something wrong and I was actually a little concerned about it. I actually sat and thought for a few minutes and collected my memories of the past week looking for any signs of a health problem of some kind that might explain such fast weight loss. I couldn't think of anything but feeling great and higher energy levels. I certainly didn't have anything happen that would be cause for concern. So, I continued on!
My weight had steadied to about 182 lbs and I had abundant energy every day, all day. The energy levels made me want to be more physically active and I began taking more walks, then runs and then I got back on my mountain bike again!
The afternoon energy level slumps at work were a thing of the past!
Then, one day it hit me like a ton of bricks when I became aware of something...
For a month, I haven't had a single headache. No dandruff either...which was a recurring, on and off problem I have had since my mid teens. And no digestive upsets at all.
The reason it was such an epiphany wasn't because these problems were gone. It was because they were always a part of my life solely because of my diet!
None of those issues were normal and they weren't because of genetics or anything else. Just the diet!
It seemed to me that the only thing that stands between true vitality, health and strength is the knowledge and the application of that knowledge into eating right. Just a few shifts in daily habits and the conscious informed choice and consent about what we're eating.
Mom was right. We really are what we eat.
While trying the Paleo diet, I experienced a new level of health that I didn't even realize was available to me.
See, throughout my life, I always had these minor little health issues that were little more than annoyances to me. I thought they were just a normal part of daily life. I figured everyone deals with issues like I experienced and so it allowed me to ignore them.
I didn't know that they could be eliminated from my life by just a few diet changes!
Let me give you some examples of some of these normal annoyances:
Since I have been on the paleo diet, I have not had a single migraine headache. Not one! My skin is clear. I never get tired or feel like I want to take a nap at work at 2 or 3 in the afternoon like I used to. No more dandruff shampoo.
Now, every time I see someone who has common ailments, I know it's all simply a diet related issue. No treatment can work as well as just getting your diet worked out! It is one of the driving factors in my efforts to build this web site.
As of the writing of this article, I am 42 years old, 6 feet tall and 183 pounds. I haven't been 183 pounds since I was in my early 20's!
I have settled into a diet largely based on the paleo diet and I am maintaining my weight and energy levels without the "issues" I once had. I am 80% paleo because I do eat and drink some dairy products and I've been known to have a bowl of organic cereal in the morning.
But for my main meals, they are organic grass fed meats and organic veggies with some fruit when I need a carbohydrate boost.
I thank myself every day for making this change and I'm certain that you can find your correct ratio of paleo diet as well...whether it be 100% or 80%.
Additionally, below are some other observations I have made since adopting the Paleo Diet: